Just Desserts–A Tea Party Celebrating the Winter Olympics and the St. Louis Blues

I’ve been wanting to have a St. Louis Blues-themed tea party for a long time. I thought that would coincide nicely with the Winter Olympics, so I planned a Blue Note and winter tea party for last night. I originally had planned on it being bigger and fancier…one of the dinner “afternoon teas” we like so much. But there just wasn’t enough time, so I went with a desserts only tea party, and while it may not have been as grand as we’ve become accustomed to, it was still fun, and I even had the gold and silver table linens to complete the Olympic look!

Green tea seemed like an appropriate choice for the PyeongChang Olympics. Even though we’ve sampled many kinds of tea over the years, the children had never tried green tea before, and they really liked it!

I made three desserts in variations…sugar cookies, Rice Krispies treats, and Jell-O jigglers. I had fun using my snowflake and music note cookie cutters, and adding in blue wherever I could!

We’re sad that the Olympics are almost over, but I still have one special meal left to make, so stay tuned!

Chickadee Thursday

Today was our much-anticipated Winter Olympics/St. Louis Blues themed tea party, and Chickadee was very excited about it!

50 Years of Blood, Sweat and Cheers

There’s a new exhibit at the St. Louis Public Library Central Library, and since we enjoyed the Fantasy Maps exhibit so much last year, I knew we’d also have to check out 50 Years of Blood, Sweat and Cheers, which celebrates the St. Louis Blues 50th anniversary year.

We started in the Great Hall. Like the Fantasy Maps exhibit, they covered a wall with art plus history in an amazing mural of players and coaches. There are also trophies on display, actual dasher boards from The Arena, an all-time Blues roster, and Blues honors and awards, including all the numbers retired by the Blues. We apparently just missed seeing Bobby Plager, as he added his number, which was retired the night before, to the wall right after we were there!

After that, we went upstairs to the Carnegie Room. This is the main exhibit, and includes every kind of Blues memorabilia you can imagine. Equipment, ticket stubs, apparel, newspapers, giveaway items…it’s all there. There is also information about the different places the Blues have called home, and information about various players.

We almost missed it, but there is also an additional two cases of memorabilia in a restricted-access archive area!

If you have any question about where the exhibit or the library is, you can follow the pucks on the sidewalks from Scottrade to the Library:

This is a really fun exhibit, but it’s only open through March 4, so there’s less than a month left to check it out! I can’t wait to see what the Central Library has on display next!

NHL Centennial Fan Arena

Yesterday, I took my students on a field trip downtown to the NHL Centennial Fan Arena, a traveling exhibit which is set up outside the Central Library this weekend. It reminded me a lot of the Baseball Hall of Fame Tour I visited last summer, in that is uses a truck to create a traveling museum, and incorporates virtual reality, artifacts, and video into the experience.

The children loved all the hands-on activities outside, including a virtual reality zamboni challenge and floor hockey.

The big attraction, for me at least, was the museum. If you know me, you know I love history of all kinds, and this exhibit did not disappoint. There were tons of artifacts from the last 100 years of NHL play, and a few special things set up that are specific to St. Louis and the Blues, so you get a good feel for sports history, as well as a bit of local history. It is fascinating to see how much the equipment has changed over the years!

The exhibit will be open today and tomorrow in St. Louis, before it packs up and heads to the next city on the list (Nashville). If you’re a hockey fan, and have time some time this weekend, I highly recommend stopping by. And it’s even a free event, so it won’t cost you a cent (unless you decide to buy a funnel cake from the stand set up next to the exhibit!). I even heard the Stanley Cup will be stopping by, as well as some members of the Blues organization!

2016-17 School Year–Week Nineteen

This has been a topsy-turvy week!

I don’t know if it was because Ryan was out-of-town, or because Moose had an unexpected day off from school due to a water main break (which also had us dealing with a boil order for over 24 hours), or if was the field trip we went on today, but everything about this week seemed backwards and upside down. We even did a lot of our schoolwork in the evenings, which is very unusual for us!

We only made it through one lesson in One God, Many Gods this week, but it was a big one…we studied Islam. Actually the information wasn’t as new as I was expecting…I guess we studied Islam more in history than I had remembered, so the children already had some knowledge of it.

Turkey and Bunny started a new chapter about the weather in science. They’re currently tracking daily highs and lows of temperature and pressure. Ladybug began a new chapter in science, as well…she’s learning all about crustaceans!

Math and history have been the two big topics of study this week. Turkey and Bunny have finally been introduced to quadratic equations and the quadratic formula. It wasn’t quite as painful as I was expecting, but they’re still early in the lessons! Ladybug is still learning different geometry terms, which she likes, if only because it means a break from long division!

Our history studies focused primarily on WWI. This also led to some interesting conversations about family history, and I was able to show the children all of my grandfather’s old papers from when he came to the US from Austria following the war. We also covered the Mexican and Bolshevik Revolutions. Bunny, in particular, is interested in the history of the Romanovs, so this was a good week to be studying history!

Today we took a field trip to downtown St. Louis. The Central Library currently has an exhibit celebrating the 50th anniversary of the St. Louis Blues, and today, the traveling NHL 100 exhibit, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the National Hockey League, hit town, appropriately right outside the library. We enjoyed touring both exhibits, and learning a bit of local history!

Hopefully next week will be a bit more “normal!”

One Nation

I spent a good chunk of yesterday at Busch Stadium, taking in the “One Nation Classic.” It was billed as the Closing Ceremonies for the Winter Classic, which was held at Busch on January second.

The One Nation Classic had several parts. When I got there, people were skating on the ice on the field. This was actually a surprise to me, as I had not heard about that part. I don’t know if it was available to anyone who had a ticket, or if you had to pay extra or know someone to get to participate, but it was fun watching people skate on Busch’s ice!

After the free skate was over, there were three events that I did know about. First, a skills competition between “Team Steen” and “Team Pietrangelo.” This was a lot of fun to watch…at times it was silly, and at other moments, you really got to see how talented the players are. It included events such as a 3-on-3 competition, a hilarious relay race, and a hardest shot competition. In the end, “Team Pietrangelo” won by a score of 14-11.

Next up was St. Louis’ Greatest Pick-Up Hockey Game. This featured “Team Stillman” (of the Blues) vs. “Team Dewitt” (of the Cardinals), and included former players from both teams such as Peter Stastny and Jim Edmonds, and other personalities. Fredbird and Louie even made an appearance…have you ever seen a giant cardinal on skates? It was fun to see the fur and feathers fly, especially when they both ended up in the penalty box! Like the skills competition, the players wore a prototype jersey that was designed in 1966, but never actually worn by the players…it was so cool! I think my favorite part was the very first goal, which was scored by Bill Dewitt against Darren Pang in goal. In the end, though, Team Stillman prevailed, and won by a score of 5-4.

The final event was a first responders game between local police officers and local firefighters. I’m not going to lie…I was so cold at that point, that I left almost immediately after puck-drop. But it was cool to see how many participants there were…both teams even had their own jerseys! I will say that I think the police team had an unfair advantage, as their lineup included not only officers, but members of the DOD and the NGA!

I wasn’t the only one who enjoyed Winter Classic activities…Ryan got to go to both the Alumni Game, and the Winter Classic itself. He got the best view, because by the time I got to Busch, they had removed the guitar from the field, and the banners from outside the stadium. Fortunately, he got some good pictures for me, allowing me to live vicariously:

It was definitely a cold day at Busch, but I’m so glad I got to go and see the ice for myself. Who knows if and when the Winter Classic will come back to St. Louis? I hope it does someday, but for now, I have some great memories of seeing Busch Stadium in a whole new light!